Toll rates on three Central Texas tollways will go up 25 percent to 50 percent in January, the Texas Transportation Commission decided Thursday, and drivers will no longer be able to use cash to pay for tolls.
Also Thursday, the commission authorized free tolls for disabled veterans on all of its toll roads, including those in Central Texas. Last month, the American-Statesman reported that despite a 2009 law allowing discount programs for disabled vets, the Texas Department of Transportation and other toll authorities in the state had declined to implement free tolls for vets. Free tolls for veterans will be available on Texas 130, Texas 45 North, Texas 45 Southeast and Loop 1, as well as toll roads in Tyler and near Laredo.
The toll increases and the waiver for disabled vets and Purple Heart and Medal of Honor recipients go into effect Jan. 1. The increases on Texas 130, Texas 45 North and Loop 1 Tollway come two years earlier than projected when TxDOT in 2002 borrowed $2.2 billion to build the three roads. Projections shared with investors showed that tolls on the three roads would remain at their original levels until 2015.
For a driver who travels the entire 3.5 miles of Loop 1 Tollway, the cost using an electronic toll tag will increase from the current 68 cents to $1.02, a 50 percent increase and about 29 cents a mile. On Texas 45 North, which is 13.3 miles long, the toll tag cost would go from $1.36 to $2.04, also a 50 percent increase and about 15.3 cents a mile.
On Texas 130′s 49 miles, the total toll would jump from $5.40 to $6.75, a 25 percent rise and about 13.8 cents a mile.
The unelected Perry appointees are raising taxes on Central Texans considerably.
Dropping the guaranteed pension benefit for Texas’ future school employees would be costly, complicated and reduce benefits for retirees, according to a new study by the Teacher Retirement System of Texas.
The study, mandated by lawmakers last year, states that the $110 billion teacher fund can pay the benefits it owes through 2075 but will need additional contributions from the state or members to erase a $24 billion long-term funding liability.
That liability, however, would increase to $36 billion if new employees were closed out of the pension and instead received a retirement benefit akin to a 401(k), as critics of public pensions recommend.
The state would then need to find some way other than member contributions to pay off that liability, said Brian Guthrie, executive director of the Teacher Retirement System.
By all means. Let’s “fix” something that isn’t broken by making it cost more, provide less coverage, and more complicated. Those are the three things most people want in a retirement plan?! Here’s what the billionaire Koch-funded regressive “think tank” had to say about this disaster.
Even so, the critics say, they will continue to press for changes to the pension system during next year’s legislative session.
“It will get a good look. There is a high likelihood that changes will be made,” said Talmadge Heflin of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think tank.
Lawmakers must ensure that the state’s retirement offering “is a combination of the best buy for the employee and for the taxpayer,” Heflin added.
This is just like the Social Security debate. It likely needs a boost in money for inflation over the next 60 years. No surprise there. There’s no reason to destroy teacher pensions through privatization. Teachers certainly deserve to have their pensions protected.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise, Federal Court Rules Texas Voter ID Law Is Discriminatory. This has always been a solution in search of a problem, and more about suppressing certain voters, then preventing in person voter fraud – which doesn’t exist. And now we know the courts agree.
A federal court in Washington D.C. on Thursday rejected a Texas law requiring voters to show certain types of photographic identification in order to cast a ballot. The three-judge panel found that the law imposes “strict, unforgiving burdens on the poor,” pointing out that racial minorities are more likely to live in poverty.
“The State of Texas enacted a voter ID law that — at least to our knowledge — is the most stringent in the country,” the opinion, embedded below, reads. “That law will almost certainly have retrogressive effect: it imposes strict, unforgiving burdens on the poor, and racial minorities in Texas are disproportionately likely to live in poverty. And crucially, the Texas legislature defeated several amendments that could have made this a far closer case.”
Texas bears the burden of proving that nothing in SB 14 “would lead to a retrogression in the position of racial minorities with respect to their effective exercise of the electoral franchise.” Because all of Texas’s evidence on retrogression is some combination of invalid, irrelevant, and unreliable, we have little trouble concluding that Texas has failed to carry its burden.
To the contrary, record evidence suggests that SB 14, if implemented, would in fact have a retrogressive effect on Hispanic and African American voters. This conclusion flows from three basic facts: (1) a substantial subgroup of Texas voters, many of whom are African American or Hispanic, lack photo ID; (2) the burdens associated with obtaining ID will weigh most heavily on the poor; and (3) racial minorities in Texas are disproportionately likely to live in poverty.
The court ruling clearly shows how voter ID laws disproportionately harm Hispanic, African-American and low-income voters, who, perhaps not surprisingly, are more likely to vote for Democrats than Republicans. Republicans drafted the voter ID law, just like the redistricting plans, to benefit their party, from passing it as “emergency” legislation at the beginning of the 2011 legislative session to allowing voters to cast a ballot with a concealed weapons permit but not a student ID. (By my count, federal or state courts have blocked new voter suppression laws in Texas, Florida, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin this year.)
The court also recognized that voting is a precious right in a democracy and is an exercise that is in no way akin to buying Sudafed or boarding a plane. Wrote the judges: “As the Supreme Court has ‘often reiterated…voting is of the most fundamental significance under our constitutional structure.’ Indeed, the right to vote free from racial discrimination is expressly protected by the Constitution.”
“Let’s be clear here, folks — two of the top Republican legislative priorities have now been revealed as exactly what they were meant to be by the repressive and backward-thinking Republican leaders of the legislature — nothing more, or less, than the disenfranchisement of an entire class of Texas citizens,” Tarrant County Democratic Party Chairman Steve Maxwell said.
“Add to that the message behind the evisceration of the Texas Public School system by the elimination of $5.4 billion from the budget, and the meaning is obvious. The Republican legislature was intent on creating an ‘underclass’ — a large segment of the population made up mostly of minority citizens who, thanks to these legislative priorities and others, would no longer have the right to a good education, to quality health care, or even the ability to exercise the fundamental right to vote,” he said.
“Fortunately for Texas, no matter how these laws were dressed up and distorted, the United States Court system saw through the deception and called it exactly what it was — discrimination and disenfranchisement at its very worst. Wake up, Republican voters — you should be ashamed at what the people you elected are doing.”
The good news is that this law will not be in effect for the November 2012 general election.
Two laws passed by the Texas GOP dealing with elections have been struck down as discriminatory in the last week. If that doesn’t get Texans to open their eyes about those who are currently in power in our state then nothing will.
Although it was by the slimmest of margins the county did raise the tax rate in next year’s budget. Since the state keeps shifting more and more of the burden to local taxpayers this is not surprising.
The Williamson County Commissioners Court on Tuesday adopted a $216 million budget, funded by a tax rate of 48.9 cents per $100 valuation. For the year ahead the average homeowner’s county tax bill increased by $2.87, officials said.
Following a lengthy and sometimes contentious summertime process, commissioners on Tuesday unanimously adopted a $210,929,795 budget, to be funded by a 2011-12 tax rate of 48.8 cents per $100 assessed valuation.
If Perry and the GOP regressives continue with their plan to not implement the ACA, local taxes will get much higher in the near future. It’s also doubtful Williamson County, with it’s current court make up, would join with counties around the state that are going to go around Perry and the regressives.
The budget, it can be argued, is still too bare bones. In a fast growing county like Williamson it’s probably best to prepare for the future, instead of constantly playing catch up.
The budget – which takes effect Oct. 1, at the start of the county’s new fiscal year – includes the hiring of three new 911 dispatchers, three new EMS paramedics and employee merit raises of up to 5 percent.
“We’ve seen a 50-percent increase in call volume in the last 10 to 12 years,” EMS Director Kenny Schnell stated, noting the county’s population has just about doubled during that same time period.
“We’ll probably have to add more EMS [personnel] next year, too,” Gattis said.
In addition to the three 911 dispatchers and three paramedics, commissioners also approved three other new hires for fiscal 2012-13, at a total cost of $650,000, Budget Officer Ashlie Blaylock said.
The budget commissioners approved Tuesday is about $5 million more than the budget for the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30.
$2 million set aside for raises
The new budget consists of approximately $129.3 million in general fund (day-to-day operating cost) expenses, plus $18.6 million for the road and bridge fund as well as $68.2 million for debt service. The latter consists of payments on large construction projects – such as roads and buildings – that have usually been approved by voters during bond elections.
Salaries and benefits account for about 63 percent of the county’s general-fund budget.
Included in the general fund is $56,759 for 3-percent raises to be paid to 19 elected county officials, as well as $2.1 million in merit raises for non-law enforcement personnel.
Raises for law enforcement, fire, first responders, and county employees is needed and will certainly help the county’s economy.
Yesterday Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst moved to quell any speculation that he won’t run for reelection in 2014. By announcing that he will be running for Lt. Gov. again in 2014, Dewhurst Plans to Run for Re-election.
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, after getting a standing ovation by the Texas Republican delegation in Florida, announced Tuesday that he plans to run for re-election.
“I fully expect to be running for re-election in March of 2014,” Dewhurst said.
“As long as the people of Texas want me to continue serving to help move this state forward, then I’m honored.”
Whether he runs or not, it’s going to be a crowded field.
Three statewide elected Republicans — Comptroller Susan Combs, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson and Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples — have all expressed some interest in running for lieutenant governor. Patterson said he will run in 2014 whether Dewhurst is on the ticket or not — and wondered out loud if the incumbent would bow out by then.
“I’m not absolutely sure that he’s absolutely sure,” Patterson said.
Dewhurst could of course just be doing this as a show of bravado to help keep the jackals at bay, but as with Rick Perry I think it’s best to assume he means it until proven otherwise.
It’s not just the potential list of jackals running against him, but he has to keep (or get), some control over a more right wing Senate.
And voucher proponents already have a powerful ally in Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, who is a potential candidate to lead the Senate Education Committee, but there has also been a dramatic reshuffling in the upper chamber, one that could expand after next week’s runoff and the November general election.
So far, four Republican senators — Steve Ogden, Chris Harris, Mike Jackson andFlorence Shapiro — have been replaced by very conservative House members — Charles Schwertner, Ken Paxton, Kelly Hancock and Larry Taylor. And two more incumbents are still in peril. Sen. Jeff Wentworth faces a stiff runoff challenge from Tea Party supportedDonna Campbell. Democrat Wendy Davis has a general election contest against Rep. Mark Shelton, R-Fort Worth, in a district that leans Republican.
Among the new faces, Patrick and others might be able to find enough support for the legislation that failed in 2007.
Earlier in the week he chose a regressive to chair the Senate Finance committee and is now making noise that he will support private school vouchers.
Dewhurst made it clear that he supports the voucher concept, though he said that is just one of many options to pursue.
“I personally don’t have any problem with a program in which children’s parents receive a payment from the state and are able to select which school that they go to,” Dewhurst said.
“I’m willing to look at more choice for more parents. It’s early, too early, to talk about what form that may take, whether it could be payments, whether it could be tax credits, whether it could be more charters schools,” he said.
Dewhurst’s job next session was going to be tough no matter what. But as a lame duck it would have been damn near impossible. What he said yesterday is what he had to say if wanted to have a chance of wielding power next session. As far as what he will ultimately decide depends on how next session goes and how the polling looks in the Fall of 2013. That and other unforeseen issues, could ultimately change his expectations of running, or whether or not the people of Texas still want him to continue serving.
Federal judicial panel blocks Texas Republicans’ redistricting plan for being purposelydiscriminatory.
To put a sharper point on this, most of the cases — the vast majority even — brought under the Voting Rights Act in the last half century have involved redistricting maps that have a discriminatory “effect.” It’s much less common for the courts to find discriminatory “intent.” But that’s what the courts found here, in the second largest state in the country, with a large and rapidly growing Hispanic population, whose Republican governor was running for president.
So it’s a big deal.
The Texas GOP drew redistricting maps that discriminated against Hispanic voters, on purpose!
The Texas GOP has wasted time, money, postponed the primaries and cost David Dewhurst a US Senate seat all to wind up in the same place we were in December 2011, with their illegally drawn redistricting maps tossed into the dust bin of history.
Texas lawmakers didn’t comply with the Voting Rights Act when they drew new maps for congressional, state Senate and state House districts, a federal court in Washington, D.C., ruled Tuesday.
“Texas … seeks from this court a declaratory judgement that its redistricting plans will neither have ‘the purpose nor will have the effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race or color, or [language minority group]“, the judges wrote. “We conclude that Texas has failed to show that any of the redistricting plans merits preclearance.”
The big question following today’s Texas redistricting opinion is ‘what happens now?’
At the moment, that’s a bit unclear. Waiting for the redistricting opinion had become a bit like waiting for Godot – so much so that many folks had stopped thinking about redistricting. Most people, in fact, were expecting a ruling on Texas’ voter ID law to come first. And with a 154 pages of opinion and dissent, folks are still digesting the opinion and looking at options.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has taken the position that the opinion will not affect the November election, which he says will proceed on the interim maps put into place back in February.
On the other hand, it is certainly possible to see a move to adjust those interim maps in the San Antonio court. For example, CD-23 arguably could be restored to its full benchmark configuration fairly easily. Similar arguments might also be made with respect to HD 117 and 149, which are wholly contained in their respective counties (to the extent redistricting plaintiffs think that not enough changes were made to those districts in the interim maps).
Other changes would seem harder. But with control of Congress potentially on the line, lots of people are going to be looking at the opinion closely over the next few days.
Changes for this year – at least conceptually – are not out of the question. In 1996, for example, the three-judge panel ordered jungle primaries in a number of congressional districts which were held on the date of the November election, with a runoff a month later.
As for an appeal, Attorney General Abbott has already said that he will appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, which could set the case for oral argument as early as this fall and likely would raise issues about the constitutionality of section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.
Stay tuned. Things are getting interesting again.
Let’s hope Voter ID is close behind.
[UPDATE]: MALDEF statement on the ruling.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Earlier today, a three-judge federal panel issued a ruling in Texas v. United States denying preclearance under section 5 of the Voting Rights Act for three Texas statewide redistricting plans. MALDEF intervened on behalf of Latino voters to challenge the congressional and state House redistricting plans on the grounds that they that discriminated against Latino voters. Because Texas is a covered jurisdiction under section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, the U.S. Attorney General or a three-judge panel must approve, or “preclear,” any redistricting plan before it can take effect. Texas sought a judgment from the court that its redistricting plans are not discriminatory and could be put into effect. Today’s decision denies preclearance and prevents Texas from implementing the maps, which were enacted in the 2011 legislative session.
In its ruling, the three-judge panel found that: the Congressional Plan reduces Latino voting strength and was enacted with discriminatory racial intent; the State House Plan reduces minority voting strength; and the State Senate Plan was enacted with discriminatory racial intent.
Thomas A. Saenz, MALDEF President and General Counsel, stated, “The intransigent refusal of Texas officials to comply with the Voting Rights Act (VRA), particularly with regard to the state’s rapidly-growing Latino population, has once again resulted in the possibility that Texas will be grappling with congressional and legislative redistricting well into the decade. Texas should abandon this obstreperous path and work to quickly adopt maps that comply with all sections of the VRA.”
MALDEF Vice President of Litigation Nina Perales, added, “Today’s decision is yet another nail in the coffin of the redistricting plans enacted by the Texas Legislature. The State should stop wasting money on further litigation and focus on securing fair election maps for all Texans.”
In this case, MALDEF represented the Texas Latino Redistricting Task Force, a statewide coalition of Latino organizations including Southwest Voter Registration Education Project (SVREP), HOPE, the Mexican-American Bar Association of Texas (MABA-TX), William C. Velasquez Institute (WCVI), Southwest Workers Union and NOMAR.
Here’s a quick answer to what “Prosperity Economics” is, from the recent report from EPI and Jacob Hacker and Nate Loewentheil, Prosperity for All:
Prosperity Economics: Building an Economy for All
Prosperity economics concludes that there is no trade-off between creating a strong, dynamic economy and fostering a society marked by greater health, broader security, increased equality of opportunity, and more broadly distributed growth.
Here’s a quick overview:
Prosperity Economics: Building an Economy for All, is a bold new paper by Professor Jacob Hacker and Nathaniel Loewentheil of Yale University that provides a comprehensive blueprint to grow our nation’s economy, strengthen our economic security, and rescue our democracy from powerful special interests.
With vivid facts and clear discussions of economic history, Hacker and Loewentheil show that the only way to achieve sustainable, long?term growth is to build an economy in which the benefits of growth are broadly shared. Their approach contrasts sharply with what they call “austerity economics,” the failed economic policy currently championed by right?wing leaders. Prosperity economics presents a bold alternative to the status quo that will rebuild a strong, secure middle class and grow our economy now and for future generations.
The Pillars of Prosperity: Growth, Security and Democracy
Prosperity economics is built on three pillars: growth, security and democracy. These pillars reinforce one another and are intertwined politically and economically.
Dynamic, innovation?led growth, grounded in job creation, public investment and broad opportunity
We must take immediate action to jumpstart our sagging economy. In the future, we need to invest in people and productivity that will lead to good jobs and rising wages. Growth alone is not sufficient to sustain our nation. We need long?term growth that is broadly enjoyed, sustainable in light of our resource and energy constraints and driven by investments in our workforce and strong collective bargaining rules that raise our standard of living.
Security for workers and their families, the environment and government finances
Markets work better when working families feel a basic security for their futures. A dynamic and competitive market requires a strong foundation that is reinforced by programs like Social Security and Medicare that guarantee a secure retirement and access to health care. Markets also work better when governments have the resources to operate smoothly far into the future. These resources are best raised through a progressive tax structure that supports the middle class; no more tax giveaways for corporations and super rich.
Democratic voice, inclusivity and accountability in Washington and the workplace
Money is increasingly corrupting and corroding democracy. When economic winners are allowed to write the economic rules, the rest of America becomes poorer and our political system weaker. For democracy to thrive, strong Unions, and empowered citizens and community organizations are needed to ensure that workers and the broader public have an organized, effective voice in our politics.
Some of the largest labor, community and advocacy groups in the country are coming together around the core propositions laid out in Prosperity Economics in a new campaign called Prosperity for All that seeks an honest conversation about our future based on the principles and recommendations set forth in the paper.
Read the report and learn more about how you can join the growing Prosperity for All movement at www.prosperityforamerica.org.
Progressives are in an awkward position right now. It’s pretty essential the our most important task is to help as many progressives as possible win seats in Congress. And we have to do what we can– those of us in swing states– to prevent Wall Street from imposing their anti-democracy ticket, Romney/Ryan, on the country. But after that we’re still going to have to contend with a Barack Obama who doesn’t quite live up to the progressive approach we need to move the country forward. In fact, certain people– if you accept Romney’s definition of “people”– are already looking forward to a post-election “bipartisan” lame-duck session in which Obama and Boehner will sell out working families to Big Business. Over the weekend, the president did a major interview with AP’s White House correspondent Ben Feller which sounds, on first glance, like some standard reelection stuff about how radical the GOP has become. But digging just a little deeper you find some scarier stuff than that… stuff about Washington’s conservative consensus that threatens America almost as much as Romney/Ryan.
Obama’s view of a different second-term dynamic in Washington, even if both he and House Republicans retain power, seems a stretch given the stalemated politics of a divided government. He said two changes– the facts that “the American people will have voted,” and that Republicans will no longer need to be focused on beating him– could lead to better conditions for deal-making.
If Republicans are willing, Obama said, “I’m prepared to make a whole range of compromises” that could even rankle his own party. But he did not get specific.
Those last 6 words should chill you to the bone. Judging by actions he’s taken in the past– particularly in appointing Wall Street shills, from Rahm Emanuel, Tim Geithner and Larry Summers to Simpson/Bowles to key economic positions– the kind of compromise the president is talking about leans very heavily towards thos same failed Austerity programs being pushed by Ryan and Romney and their Wall Street masters. It’s the wrong way to go. And that’s why that video of Jacob Hacker talking about Prosperity Economics is up top. I hope you watched it already. If not, please do so now. I’ll wait; don’t worry.
Watch this video until the very end, when Hacker answers the question about what step 1 & 1(A) are on our path back to prosperity.
We must keep pushing Obama from the left, if not, he will only drift further to the right.
The Republicans in the Texas Legislature that underfunded public education by almost $6 billion dollars over the current biennium have no intention of ever putting that money back, no matter how much the economy improves. That’s a political reality that everyone must understand as we continue to discuss public education during this election and the upcoming legislative session.
They haven’t been fighting for decades to destroy public education, finally do what they’ve been intending, just to turn around and reverse course two years later. The next play in the playbook will be instead to try and use a voucher scheme to “save” money in public education. Evidence Friday’s Senate Education Committee hearing, which is currently without a chair.
At that hearing on Friday two think tanks with ties to ALEC (Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice and Heartland Institute) testified in favor of school vouchers in Texas. It was full of the usual when privatization is discussed phantom savings, which can no longer be believed. The GOP will try to use their donor’s corporate backed think tanks as justification for the phantom savings in order to never put the $6 billion from last session back into public education. From the Texas Tribune, Senate Hearing Tackles Vouchers, School Choice.
In a preview of a likely battle in the upcoming legislative session, state lawmakers on the Senate Education Committee on Friday heard testimony on school choice programs, including vouchers that would allow students to use public money to attend private schools.
When asked how accountability would work under a voucher program, Matthew Ladner, a fellow at the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, said it was important to remember that school choice was “an opt out of the public school system instead of an extension of the public school system into the private school.”
Private schools operate under a bottom-up rather than a top-down accountability system, he said. “Parents can pick up and leave” if they feel their children aren’t being adequately served, he said.
Joe Bast of the Chicago-based Heartland Institute, among several national witnesses at the hearing, detailed a voucher program he called a “taxpayer savings grant” that he said would result in a savings to the state of $2 billion over the next biennium by giving about $5,200 to each student to attend private schools. He estimated that just under 7 percent of students would take advantage of it. The greater demand for private education would help increase teacher pay, he said, and result in better productivity in public schools.
Members of the Senate Education Committee heard from advocates for programs that allow parents to take part of what the state would spend to educate their children in public schools and use it to cover tuition at private ones.
They also listened to groups wanting to ease the current cap of 215 charter schools licensed to operate in Texas.
“We need to look at this as more of a free-market system,” said Andrew Erben, president of the Texas Institute for Education Reform, who compared today’s schools to a ball bearing factory where authorities establish a single set of regulations and hope all kids come out the same.
Erben, whose group represents business interests, said: “We need to let parents and students decide by giving them more options.”
State Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, noted that Erben’s institute has called for ending bilingual education programs and scrapping a state-imposed maximum of 22 students per elementary school classroom. Erben believes that Texas already spends more than enough on public education, West said.
Erben replied that “spending nearly $50 billion in the aggregate is more than adequate.” Royce shot back, “We cut about $5 billion from our school finance system. You still think it’s adequate?”
In 2011, state lawmakers cut $4 billion from public school funding and $1.4 billion from grant programs, even though Texas’ booming population means enrollment is surging.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, said private schools can pick which students they want, meaning that greater school choice may ensure that the only students left in traditional schools are those who will be rejected by private ones or whose parents are too poor to help pay for schooling.
Greg Richmond, president of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, said that while 400 to 500 new charter schools open per year nationwide, only about 7 percent of those up for renewal close, meaning that many subpar schools continue to operate.
Rita Haecker, president of the Texas State Teachers Association, said, “So-called ‘choice’ programs offer no real choice for the overwhelming majority of students.”
What a mean way to kick off the school year: Governor Rick Perry has appointed former Railroad Commissioner and failed Congressional candidate Michael Williams to the top job at the Texas Education Agency.
Williams recently shopped around for a Congressional district after pulling out of Republican US Senate Primary, landing in CD-25 where he failed to even make the run-off. The former Railroad Commissioner — aka shill for the oil and gas industry — will take over for former head Robert Scott, who left last month after five years at the TEA. Scott spoke openly about the “perversion” of our public school system’s high-stakes testing system.
Michael Williams has little-to-no background on education policy. His Congressional campaign website does not list education on his “Issues” page. Instead, he seems primarily obsessed with slashing taxes and cutting revenue, and repealing Obamacare.
It is unlikely given his background that Williams will oppose the $4 billion cut from public schools last legislative session, or play any role in finding legitimate solutions to funding our public schools and enrollment growth, and preventing our school districts from hemorrhaging education workers.
Why in the world would Gov. Perry put someone with no education experience in charge of education? What it means is that Perry probably cares little about education and what happens with it going forward. Privatizing education is the next step.
This is their plan. Anyone who still expects the GOP in Texas – people who believe government is the problem – to use it to help people is fooling themselves. It’s been said a thousand times. Nothing will change until we change who runs our state.
AUSTIN – “I do not know what serving twelve years as Railroad Commissioner and two attempts at federal office have to do with knowledge about Texas public schools. But, I do know that being friends with Governor Perry seems to mean one is never out of a job for long. If I was starting up an oil and gas company in Texas, I might call Michael Williams to run it. But, I would never think to call Michael Williams to try to run Texas’ public schools. Should this appointment occur, let it be known once again that the educational system in Texas is at pivotal point, and Texans can not afford to hold on-the-job training classes for the person in charge.”
The legal action by the Harris County Democratic Party to remove DA nominee Lloyd Oliver from the November ballot places the rest of the party’s candidates in an unfortunate and unnecessary quandary, posits PDiddie at Brains and Eggs.
Via the Texas Tribune, Sadler Says Cruz Should Go Back to Canada. The media is going to focus more on what he said about Cruz not being from Texas. But what he said about Cruz’s radicalism is much more damning.
Also Kasim Reed tore Cruz up pretty good on Meet The Press.